Make a Donation

Consider making a donation to support SHAKSPER.

Subscribe to Our Feeds

Current Postings RSS

Announcements RSS

Home :: Archive :: 2002 :: July ::
Re: Attributing Masterworks
The Shakespeare Conference: SHK 13.1680  Tuesday, 23 July 2002

[1]     From:   Brian Willis <
 This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it
 >
        Date:   Monday, 22 Jul 2002 09:42:30 -0700 (PDT)
        Subj:   Re: SHK 13.1676 Re: Attributing Masterworks

[2]     From:   Elliott H. Stone <
 This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it
 >
        Date:   Monday, 22 Jul 2002 22:09:03 EDT
        Subj:   Re: SHK 13.1676 Re: Attributing Masterworks

[3]     From:   Ward Elliott <
 This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it
 >
        Date:   Monday, 22 Jul 2002 22:34:12 -0700
        Subj:   RE: SHK 13.1676 Re: Attributing Masterworks


[1]-----------------------------------------------------------------
From:           Brian Willis <
 This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it
 >
Date:           Monday, 22 Jul 2002 09:42:30 -0700 (PDT)
Subject: 13.1676 Re: Attributing Masterworks
Comment:        Re: SHK 13.1676 Re: Attributing Masterworks

> Why is it not possible that the author of the Elegy
> by W.S. took an old
> lost Shakespearean funeral poem and changed a few
> words here and there
> to make it fit its new deceased subject matter? Let
> us posit that the
> poem was 80% by Shakespeare and 20% by the new user.
> What would the
> computer say? Why could not this be the case with
> the Elegy by W. S.?
>
> Best, Elliott H. Stone

Elliott does point out a possibility. Certainly those who have posited
that Macbeth is Middleton's adaptation of the play (cuts plus the
interpolations of the witches) would tend to agree that this is one of
many possibilities. Recent textual scholarship has proven that such
matters are never as cut and dry as "it is all Shakespeare" or "it is
NOT Shakespeare".

Brian Willis

[2]-------------------------------------------------------------
From:           Elliott H. Stone <
 This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it
 >
Date:           Monday, 22 Jul 2002 22:09:03 EDT
Subject: 13.1676 Re: Attributing Masterworks
Comment:        Re: SHK 13.1676 Re: Attributing Masterworks

Is it possible that the Elegy by W. S.  is a satire? Is not the reader
to understand that every word of praise in the poem should be taken for
the exact opposite meaning? This would make sense why Thorpe would not
put his name on it and why the author would only place his initials
rather than his whole name. William Peter died in a sensational murder.
He was a drunk, a good-for-nothing and a gambler who was stabbed to
death while riding a horse by a kinsman! None of the facts in the poem
fit the man. The poem reads like it was written for a saint. There also
is a big hint in the dedicatory letter where we are told by Thorpe that
he has no intention of telling us the truth.  Professor Foster felt that
his second choice for the author was William Strachey. Is it possible
that Thorpe wanted to capitalize on the sensational murder and quickly
put to use an old lost Shakespeare manuscript for Thorpe to quickly (and
quite obviously with very little ability) adapt for this satire. A
satire published to make money and not for any love between the author
and the deceased's brother. The poem in 1612 must have been seen as
ironic and funny. Could it be that the current scholars just don't get
the joke?

Best, Elliott H. Stone

[3]-------------------------------------------------------------
From:           Ward Elliott <
 This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it
 >
Date:           Monday, 22 Jul 2002 22:34:12 -0700
Subject: 13.1676 Re: Attributing Masterworks
Comment:        RE: SHK 13.1676 Re: Attributing Masterworks

One can only speculate how poems co-authored by Shakespeare would do on
Shakespeare tests, but one plausible outcome is what we have found with
plays: the ones we think are co-authored come out farther from
Shakespeare's norms than the ones he wrote solo, but closer than the
nearest plays written by someone else.  If we were measuring it against
the solar system, all of Shakespeare's works would fall within the orbit
of Mercury; all works by everyone else would fall outside the orbit of
Earth. Co-authored works might lie in between.

The Elegy does not fit this model for Shakespeare.  It fails 16 of our
33 Shakespeare tests and falls outside the solar system altogether.  But
it fits Ford like a glove, fails only one Ford test, and falls well
within Ford's Mercury orbit. By Valenza's calculations, it is 790
trillion times closer to Ford than to Shakespeare.  It seems hardly
likely that so gross a Shakespeare outlier -- and so tight a Ford inlier
-- would be 80% Shakespeare's work.

Ward Elliott

_______________________________________________________________
S H A K S P E R: The Global Shakespeare Discussion List
Hardy M. Cook, 
 This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it
 
The S H A K S P E R Web Site <http://www.shaksper.net>

DISCLAIMER: Although SHAKSPER is a moderated discussion list, the
opinions expressed on it are the sole property of the poster, and the
editor assumes no responsibility for them.
 

©2011 Hardy Cook. All rights reserved.